He has lived on a block of ice, collected one million returnable cans, and sat
in a pickup truck 100 feet in the air collecting food, all for the sake of charity. No, he's not illusionist
David Blaine, but Chris Allinger, morning drive personality at Ithaca's Q Country (WQNY).
A fourteen-year market veteran, Chris comes from a radio family. His dad, Ralph
Allinger, was the "Voice of the Mohawk Valley" in Utica at WIBX. His Mom, Betty (Griffin)
Allinger, worked for WIBX for some 40 years before retiring, doing everything
from radio plays to news to continuity.
Chris never set out for a career in radio, opting instead for the theater
in Boston and New York. He joined WQNY (then an AC station) in 1988, and soon after,
landed the morning gig. When Eagle Broadcasting bought the station in 1996 and flipped
its format from rock to country, Chris assumed he'd be out on the street. But, "they
keep leaving the door open, so I go in and do a little show," he says.
Allinger, who has a 16-year-old daughter, currently lives up the hill from Ithaca in
Dryden. His latest project: he's engaged to be married. "As soon as we get around to it,"
he says, "maybe after I do that next big stunt... which could actually be surviving my
daughter's driving lessons!"
When he's not playing the hits on Q Country or sweating it out in the passenger seat, what's
Chris Allinger like Beyond the Studio?
We asked him...
What was the last book you read?
Believe it or not, I picked up George Burns' "Gracie, a Love Story" at a garage
sale for 25 cents. I couldn't put it down.
If you could only take one CD to a desert island, what would it be?
Whew, that's tough. I've changed it so many times over the years.
I think it would be anything by Lyle Lovett but maybe an old Harry Nilsson
collection. I might have a different answer tomorrow.
Letterman, Leno, or Koppel?
Without a doubt: Letterman. Not to be nasty but I just can't take Leno, and Koppel's
hair gives me the willies. Plus, it would have to be Dave, because...
Which three famous people (dead or alive) would you invite to dinner?
Dave Letterman, Harpo Marx and Superman. Does the last one count?
Which song at your station would you not shed a tear for if it never
came up in rotation again?
I'd have to say any song that features an absentee or drunk father.
I'm a little sick of that theme. In the rock days it would have been
"Fly Like an Eagle". With my luck, Kenny Chesney will have a cover
of it on his next album.
How many days do you think you would last on Survivor and why?
Actually, I think I might be able to last for a while but probably not
be cutthroat enough to win. It's Average Joe that gives me nightmares.
I'm at the audition and they just keep whispering, "He's really quite a bit
below average, don't you think?"
What talent would you most like to have?
Does flying under my own power count? If not, then I think it would be stand up comedy.
I love it, and I'd love to be great at it.
What would you be doing if you weren't in radio?
I would really love to be a cartoon voice-over artist. I've already perfected
"Welcome to McDonalds, may I take your order?" in a wide variety of voices
because that's the only other thing I think I'm qualified for at the moment.
What's your dream vacation?
Jamaica, beach, pina colada, little grass hut, my fiancee and a smile.
What's you favorite ice cream flavor?
Whatever is in the cone when I'm licking it. I love it all!